Over the winter months, the conversation around the holiday dinner tables turned to my book The Divine Daughter. The conversation didn't really stay on the book, but instead wandered over to other topics and ideas. Kind of like the book, I guess.
Anyway, Mom and Dad got thinking about writing reviews for the book. Do you think they are biased readers? But maybe you can find a certain kind of honesty in families and in biases too.
Here are their words.
Andrew says in the Foreword to his book that he “wanted to look at psychology, religion, literature, and art...” and that is what he does. To do this, he refers to many scholars and thinkers.
At times, one feels overwhelmed with all the views he gives us to consider. Often I read the book in front of the computer so I could google the various scholars to determine when and where they lived, and some of the things they studied.
Andrew also includes illustrations and sometimes I skipped ahead to an illustration. I read some fascinating stories about Jyoti, Malala, Ayaan, and Aduri - amazing young women, and also Princess Leia!!
This book opens a lot to think about and a way to find out more about life.
The Divine Daughter - by Andrew Gilchrist - 2019 Friesen Press, Canada I think Gilchrist’s book will be a challenge for most of us because it basically is talking about change, and how change is pushed aside in one way or another. But more important, it is about changing our minds. How do we try to look harder and try to think differently about life? This book is about how we live on this earth with one another in family and in the network of our communities, our country, and the world. Gilchrist’s book centres around “the daughter” in societies around the world and how we have thought about and treated the daughter. Sometimes in negative ways, not only in the past but still today. And then Gilchrist tries to draw out images of how we have failed desperately in our storytelling through mythology, history, psychology, Biblical and religious writings, movies and other forms of the media. The greater challenge comes from the book in giving us the desire to create different images of “the daughter,” which he called the Divine Daughter, that takes us into new ways of thinking - how changing our minds and creating a more beautiful impression and understanding of young girls and children in our world. Gilchrist is a philosophy student (Queen’s University) so comes to his argument for rethinking and change through a great deal of study in the arts, which includes history and mythology, literature and story. He uses these many resources as well as modern stories from the news and books and films of everyday media. He develops and then repeats the idea of looking at our daughters as being divine and special and free to be who they are meant to be the way a love song can change our minds. Gilchrist suggests in his Foreword,
“The point of this book is not to get you to follow the logic of the writer. Instead, prepare for exploration and association. Ride before breaking. Survive while surfing. When the time comes, when the rhythm and the sounds of the text draw upon your senses, position your board to see where your ride takes you. A song can call your attention back to what’s important.”
What brings you back to what's important?
Here's one little thing I've learned from this - you can learn a lot about yourself, and what other think of you, by looking at the words they offer you. And it's a tough business, changing your mind.